Bubblegum flavored battle zones

picture of horse chewed stable door

I spotted this old stable door on a recent walk. I wish I could have known the horse that lived here.

I could tell a lot from the evidence left behind, though.

Note the owner’s cement reinforced foundation, the reinforcing bolts on the lower edges of the stable door, the double lock on the middle, and it that weren’t enough, two additional locks at the top and a metal reinforcing bar securing the top brace.

And as rebuttal left by the occupant, the determined chews on the side and top of the half-door.

I wish I could have painted the door bubblegum flavor, for this horse so determined to leave and the owner so determined to keep him there!

Did they like each other, I wonder, these two so intertwined in the battle for control?

I am not eccentric.
It’s just that I am more alive than most people.
I am an unpopular electric eel
set in a pond of goldfish.

~Dame Edith Sitwell~

 

Cover reveal: Silence in West Fork

Cover for upcoming release: SILENCE IN WEST FORK

West Fork is one of my favorite places in the whole world. A tributary of Oak Creek Canyon in the Verde Valley of Arizona, this clear stream runs through ponderosa pine and fir trees. Ferns and yellow columbines carpet the ground, and golden eagles nest in its boundary red cliffs.

And, for the inveterate mystery writer, it’s the perfect place for a murder to occur!

Join me in SILENCE IN WEST FORK as Pegasus Quincy works against time to solve a life-or-death murder case. The stakes are high. If she fails, her good friend Shepherd Malone’s daughter may go to prison for life, even if she is innocent.

Coming soon!

 

Perfect symmetry

water symmetry

Upside down, right side up, left to right, right to left. If you’ve ever noticed, we don’t often find (almost) perfect symmetry in nature. That’s why, when I found this vista, I was delighted.

Symmetry creates a comforting predictability. Two by two, like the story of Madeleine living in the convent. Or Noah’s animals in the ark. As children begin to explore a continually new, exciting world, they need to return occasionally to what they know.

Every up has a down. Every night has a day. Shared pairs of togetherness.

One of these things is not like the others,
One of these things just doesn’t belong,
~Sesame Street Song~

 

Storing the precious

bookstore safe

Can you tell what this is?

A walk-in safe. In a used book store!

When I asked the owner about it, she explained the old building the bookstore now inhabited had originally been a bank. When the bank relocated, it had been too expensive to move the safe, so it had just been left behind.

When I asked her what she kept in there she shrugged. An umbrella. For when it rains. Extra paperclips and light bulbs.

If I had a hundred-year-old walk-in safe what would I keep in there?

My Yale edition of the complete Shakespeare plays, perhaps. Or the Bible I got for confirmation (which somehow in my moves over the years has disappeared.) Or the Winnie-the-Pooh I read to my child when she was young. Or DESERT SOLITAIRE by Ed Abbey that launched my love of nature conservancy.

I don’t think it would be paperclips and light bulbs!

When I use a word it means
just what I choose it to mean,
neither more or less.

~Lewis Carroll, author~

 

Still standing

I love old doors! When I found these two in an ancient house, I was hooked. They have weathered time and hardship and still are standing with a special beauty all their own. They remind me of family.

My sister and I have had our differences over the years, and our moments of joy together. But as we grow older, it is our shared history that becomes especially precious to me. Just like these old doors.

We know what it’s like to experience South Dakota thunderstorms, and steal apples from the neighbor’s orchard, and make snow angels in chest-high blizzard snow. No one else in my life, no one else in the world, can do that with me.

Make new friends, but keep the old.
One is silver and the other gold.
~Girl Scout singing round~

 

Doing the hard thing

Lake in New Hampshire

In the summer the sun rises early in New Hampshire. I knew there would be something to see if I set the alarm and rose to greet it. But I’d flown across country the day before and spent a good part of the evening catching up with family happenings.

I didn’t want to get up. Even so, I stumbled out and discovered this.

Beauty will sometimes allow us to share in its fullness if we do the hard thing, the one thing we really would rather not do. The reward becomes worth the effort.

We live in a moment of history
where change is so speeded up
that we begin to see the present
only when it is already disappearing.

~R. D. Laing~